Friday, November 13, 2009

The Soldier

A friend of mine wrote this and is allowing me to share it here. He sent it to me on Wednesday...Veteran's Day and I loved it. I hope it blesses you as well.

By Barrett Christian

Ephesians 6:10-18
The Whole Armor of God
"10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints…"

As the dust settles around his feet, the view of the soldier’s fight lay before him. Strewn across the vast battlefield are images of his fallen foes; lust, sexual impurity, pride, lying, malice, sinful anger. And numerous others he has fought. Although these are fallen, he can still feel the hate of the others’ glaring eyes locked on him from the dark crevices and cracks of his rocky surroundings. But they are held at bay by the presence of The King-General who has made his way onto the battlefield.

The sun begins to set on the long day that he has endured. Dirt, grime and sweat are this warrior’s war paint. His hands are sore and callused from holding his Sword so tightly during the fierce warfare. His arms scream in protest as he struggles to hold his Shield level. The straps from his Breastplate have left their mark on his slumped shoulders. Every muscle in his body aches with each step he slowly takes.
The soldier’s eyes glance out from under the helm of his war-scarred Helmet to his fellow warriors. Some are in worse condition than he, others have held their ground in battle while others have fallen, but have not been defeated. With a reassuring nod this man of war greets his fellow combatants as he makes his way to The General.

As The General moves slowly and gracefully across The Blood stained ground, he is accompanied by The Great Physician, who too has seen the war and been pierced by its spear and bears the marks of battle on His body. But because He suffered, He knows how to tend to those who are now suffering from their wounds.

The years spent in combat have begun to show on our warrior’s body and armor. His muscles have been hewed into chiseled excellence from the years spent not only practicing the art of war but fighting in combat against the enemy of his soul. His scars are not only merit badges, but also serve to remind him of The Great Physician’s healing touch who took away the pain from every wound he received. His Helmet is decorated not only with the Blood red plume which is the insignia of The General’s Army, but is also adorned with numerous cuts, scratches and dents he took during the many campaigns of battle.

His Breastplate, as magnificent as it may be, shows signs of daily use. But it has served its purpose and withstood the attacks of evil spears, swords and every deadly blow the enemy wielded in hate.

As he nears The General, the soldier slides his Sword into its scabbard with a click as it locks in place, even though the battle is over for the day, his hand stays on its hilt. Never leaving it so that in a moment’s notice he will be ready. This Sword has served its purpose well. As it was forged by The General Himself and has withstood the timeless ages of battles others have fought before him and is a proven weapon for the war he has before he goes home.

His Belt is something that is often over looked but is absolutely necessary. With this simple leather strap, his entire armor is held together from head to toe and its there he keeps his Sword fastened securely to his person. Without it his armor would be rendered ineffective in protecting him from the enemies advances.

A bead of sweat runs down the length of his shin and pools against the strap of his Sandals. The ground he navigates is littered with broken shards of rock, holes and snares laid by the enemy. But these thick Sandals project him from the uncertain traps that lay on the ground around him. The studded soles give him a secure footing when he stands his ground against the hordes of hell he encounters.

The soldier flexes his fingers a few times to ease the tension on them from carrying his heavy wooden and leather Shield. For he has been soaking it in water daily ever since he was united with this army. The Water he soaks it in is from the Living Fountain that his General has provided from the riches of His Kingdom.
The reason for the daily soaking is to keep the fiery arrows that the enemy shoots at him extinguished and keeps them from becoming a raging fire that can easily consume his body if left unchecked.

The soldier comes to a slow stop. As he waits for his King to lift a fallen soldier to his feet, he leans on the Spear that he keeps slung across his back. This Spear is a long hard pike he uses to throw at the enemy who is too far for a frontal attack and is used most often when he sees a fellow soldier beaten back by his attackers. Its affective for what is used for. He has faith in his Spear and can direct it with deadly precision when used it in combat.

As the tired combatant leans on this Spear, an all too often unnoticed being catches his eye, the Minister of Peace. His presence among the weary brings peace and comfort to those who have exhausted themselves in the battle. Even from where he stands, the soldier can feel the warmth of His power gracing the hard form of his earthly frame.

Finally, The King-General stands before the waiting soldier. Care, love and authority are expressed in fullness through His eyes. The soldier pulls himself to attention, but before he can stand at full height, The King places His hand on his follower’s shoulder.

Nothing is said between The King and His follower. Only the sweet presence of His Lord now occupies his tired mind. The fight was worth it. Was it hard? Yes. But his reward is soon to come. His King is not only a General to His army, but a conqueror that has secured the final battle on a hill called Mt. Calvary. For it’s in the shadow of Mt. Calvary that every battle has been and will ever be fought and won.

No comments: